What will happen in The Handmaid’s Tale season 2?
If season one of The Handmaid’s Tale introduced audiences to the nightmarish, patriarchal society of Gilead, then the second outing will delve even deeper.
The first run was pretty much a straight adaptation of Atwood’s 1985 novel and ended with Offred/June (played by Elisabeth Moss) bundled into the back of an anonymous van as she attempted to escape.
Season two will pick up from this as audiences find out whether Offred managed to escape or if it was just the Eyes – agents of Gilead – picking her up and potentially taking to the Colonies.
The second run will also be focused on Offred’s pregnancy and her continuing fight against the suffocating system.
The Handmaid’s Tale featured flashbacks and the drama will again be exploring Offred’s past, along with that of her friends.
Mad Men and Top of the Lake’s Moss has already promised fans that they’re in for another tough watch with a “really dark” season ahead.
Here are some of the key plot points for The Handmaid’s Tale season two.
Offred’s back story
Creator Bruce Miller told Entertainment Weekly about the follow up: “The seasons moving forward, we have so much stuff to do: the stories of the colonies, the red center, there are so many worlds to explore.”
He continued: “We are going to stay focused on Offred and her journey through Gilead. We aren’t going to stray too far from that.”
Season two will see more of Offred’s mother Holly (Cherry Jones), who was revealed in the first run to have been sent to the colonies for protesting against the system.
It was recently announced that Jones would be taking on a recurring role in season two starting from episode three.
Holly has been described as “an outspoken feminist and a judgmental but loving mother to June”.
Elisabeth Moss as Offred in The Handmaid’s Tale
The formation of Gilead
The West Wing and Get Out actor Bradley Whitford was recently confirmed to be joining the cast as Commander Joseph Lawrence, one of the founders of the authoritarian regime.
A summary from Deadline reads: “[T]he architect of Gilead’s economy, who is gruff and intimidating, with a disheveled mad genius vibe.
“His sly humour and flashes of kindness make him a confusing, mysterious presence for his newest Handmaid.”
Within all of this will be Aunt Lydia (Ann Dowd), who believes she’s helping the Handmaids.
Ann Dowd as Aunt Lydia in The Handmaid’s Tale
This was shown in a shocking Salvaging scene in which a group of Handmaids were encouraged to killed a man for apparently raping a pregnant Handmaid and subsequently led to the death of the baby.
Actress Dowd said of her character: “What I love about her – it’s important to deeply love a character – is that she’s doing what she believes to be right.
“Her entire focus is on those girls, getting the girls to understand that what she’s doing is out of love for them and care for them and it is for their own good.”
She added: “I believe she would do anything she had to do.”
The Handmaid’s Tale season 2 will be airing later this year
Showrunner Miller went on to say of Lydia: “She’s trying to get to an end that she thinks is a hundred per cent, absolutely essential to the survival of the world and she’s bought into this version of how to get there.”
Aunt Lydia will be back again in season two and it’s likely we’ll find out more about how she became the cruel instructor at the Rachel and Leah Center.
Speaking to Newsweek last year, Dowd said of the Aunt: “Her devotion to [the handmaids] is real.
“She believes that without her, they cannot become the women they need to become to stay alive and have a meaningful life. I think she would go to her dying breath with that belief.”
Return of Ofglen
Alexis Bledel’s character Ofglen/Emily suffered much abuse at the hands of the regime but she is slated to be back as a series regular.
Ofglen initially told Offred about the secret resistance group Mayday and gave her friend details about the underground movement.
There’s also going to be more about Ofglen’s backstory after it was announced that Veep actress Clea DuVall had been cast as Sylvia, Emily’s wife and parent to their son.
The Handmaid’s Tale is available on DVD from March 5
The Handmaid’s Tale season 2 will be released on Hulu on April 25 in the US and on Channel 4 later this year.